Letter before action - debt recovery

A letter before action demands payment from the debtor within 14 days failing which court action will be commenced. The pre-action protocols which are the court’s guidelines to pre-action conduct provide that a debtor should be given a reasonable time to respond and that as a general rule 14 days will be regarded as a reasonable time. The practice direction containing the protocol may be found at: pre-action conduct and protocols. This protocol affects business to business debts unless the debtor is a sole trader.

Failure to comply with the protocol can lead to costs consequences later if a claim is disputed.

Our debt recovery statistics show that in 70% of cases where a letter before action is issued, court proceedings have been avoided. Speak to us on 0203 816 9303.

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Pre-action protocol

If you are a business (including sole traders and public bodies) claiming payment from an individual (including a sole trader), a new pre-action protocol came into force on 1 October 2017 will apply to you.

For further information as to how this will affect you, click here - Letter of claim

Unpaid debts hold up your business, affecting cash flow, creating uncertainty and potentially preventing payment of your staff or creditors, harming your reputation. It’s crucial for any business to ensure that those you trade with do so on your terms. For debt recovery advice that’s tailored to your business, call our team on 0203 816 9303.

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As an award-winning top 150 law firm, with over 450 staff based in offices across the country, you're never far from the advice you need.